, NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 29 – The Transitional Authority Chairman Kinuthia Wamwangi has appealed to Members of the County Assemblies (MCAs) to be considerate and accept the 50 percent pay increase given to them by the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC).
Speaking to Capital FM News on Friday, Wamwangi described the terms as reasonable and stated that anything more would be stretching the government’s budget.
“The MCAs should be considerate. No one ever gets enough and even me if you ask me I am not getting enough but a time comes when you must say ‘well, at least I am better off than before’ and I think a time has come when the MCAs must say they are better off than before,” he said.
His sentiments came even as a section of the MCAs turned down the increase saying they were not consulted.
“We must be conscience that this country has a limit in the affordability of the public service wage bill,” Wamwangi stated while responding to this rejection.
The SRC on Thursday revised the salaries of the Members of County Assemblies pegging their basic pay at Sh123,750 per month up from the gazetted Sh79,200.
The Kisumu County Assembly members, are among those who rejected the pay offer by the SRC.
The assembly majority leader Samuel Ong’ou said the commission has failed the ward representatives by awarding a meager salary increase.
“We are rejecting whatever has been awarded by the Commission and they need to re-sit and use whatever information they have to review the salaries upward. If they do not have enough then the best thing is for them to induct themselves so that they know the functions of the county assembly,” he said.
“Based on what awarded yesterday (Thursday), the Commission does not really know and understand its work.”
Addressing the press in Kisumu, the majority leader said the work evaluation exercise that was done by the commission was a waste of public resources.
“This is a clear insult to the Members of the County Assembly and we wonder why the Commission had to waste a lot of money in doing the review. We believe that the money that they wasted, they would have used it in inducting themselves,” he stated.
In the new structure, the MCAs will also get a sitting allowance of Sh124,800, a mileage/commuter allowance pegged at Sh39,528 and airtime worth Sh5,000 per month bringing their monthly take home to Sh293,078.
SRC Chairperson Sarah Serem explained that the salary review comes after the Commission conducted a job reevaluation exercise which found them deserving of a pay hike.
However, the increase will not be immediate and will have to wait until the next financial year starting July 2014 because it had not been factored in the current budget.
They are also set to get mortgage and car loan facilities valued at Sh3 million and Sh2 million respectively once in their five year term.
Speakers, Deputy Speakers, Leaders of Majority and their Deputies as well as the Chief Whips and their Deputies, Leaders of Minority and their Deputies, Minority Whips, Committee Chairpersons and Vice Chairpersons in all the County Assemblies will also get an increase.
A Speaker will for instance pocket Sh480,500 per month up from Sh225,000.
In the new structures, each Speaker’s basic pay is Sh262,500 but they will enjoy numerous allowances bringing to total their take home to Sh480,500.